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Thursday Caterwaul: Florida Panthers Open Forum - hockey's back!

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NHL schedule opens with a bang, Cats in holding pattern.

Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports

The NHL opened its 98th season of play last night, and while our Florida Panthers weren't part of the festivities, (we'll have to wait until Saturday night to see the Cats) there were four "rivalry" games on the slate.

The Chicago Blackhawks raised the 2015 Stanley Cup banner, but were beaten by the visiting New York Rangers 3-2.

Other action saw the Montreal Canadiens skate past the Toronto Maple Leafs by a 3-1 count at the Air Canada Centre; the Vancouver Canucks spanked the host Calgary Flames 5-1; and former Panther coach Peter DeBoer got a 5-1 win over the Los Angeles Kings at Staples Center in his first regular season game behind the bench for the San Jose Sharks.

There are seven games on tap tonight, with the highlight of the evening being Connor McDavid's debut as the Edmonton Oilers visit the powerful St. Louis Blues.

All is quiet in PantherLand, as the club prepares for its opener at the BB&T Center Saturday night. In case you missed it yesterday, here is a link to the club's 23-man roster.

Feel free to comment on anything that's on your mind regarding the Panthers, last night's games, or hockey in general. That's what we're here for.

Game On!